Sunday, October 3, 2010

JDRF event - pumps??

First off, I wanted to give an update on my awesome friend. Yesterday, my husband and I had to take our daughter to an appointment and it was smack in the middle of lunch time - Adam would need to be picked up from preschool and be fed lunch....and given an insulin shot.

So, my friend said, "Yes, I'll do it!" and I showed her the ropes. Her next door neighbor is a nurse, so that was her backup in case things got hairy. :) She texted me his blood sugar numbers after school and then she called me and told me everything he ate for lunch - I added up the carbs and told her to draw up 2 units of insulin...and she gave Adam his shot! She texted me when it was done and she was so proud of herself. :) She said she accidentally stuck him twice because her hand was shaking so hard, but she did it! And Adam trusts her, so he just sat there and didn't complain one bit.

I am so blessed to have her.

Next topic...we went to our local JDRF Technology Review and Update yesterday. It was a good chance to meet with pump reps and listen to a panel talk about their experiences. We are still months away from a pump...but my main question is...

How in the world do you decide which one is for you??

If anyone has the time, I'd love to hear how you chose the pump you chose...or even direct me to a post on your blog. My husband and I are both enthralled with the Omnipod since it's tubeless, but after visiting all of the other pump tables, I like the Animas Ping and the fact that the Medtronic has the CGM. Aaaaaahhhh....which to choose? There was a 4 year old and his mom on the panel that had the Omnipod, which I thought was really cool.

And it's not like you can just ask your insurance to pay for a $6,000 pump, try it out and say, "nah, we don't like that one. Can we try another, please?"


  1. My daughter is 10 she was dx almost 2 years ago, we started with the minimed and now we have the omnipod. she loves the omni pod, its so easy with the remote and self insertion. Also she is very active with sports and we have never had a problem with it. love love love it LOL if you can love a medical device.

  2. OMGsh!!!!! "Sugar" and I were there :)

    I made the comment about the importance of site rotation and mentioned that we use the EMLA numbing cream on her tummy as long as she agrees to rotate without arguing. Sugar began pumping at the age of 3 -- she's 7 now.

    I think you'll find that everyone is pleased with their pump choices for different reasons.

    Sugar wears the Animas Ping and we *love* it. The remote is AWESOME! She wore a different pump (Cozmo) for 3 years, but the company went out of business so we switched to the Ping a little over a year ago. After pumping without the remote and now having it, I must say that it's AMAZING!

    The "insulin on board" (IOB) feature is extremely important to us. Omnipod doesn't offer the IOB feature we need for successful management. The Omnipod only keeps track of active insulin for correction doses - it doesn't keep track of active insulin for boluses given to cover carbs. Just yesterday, I prevented a low, because I knew how much active insulin was circulating from the guess I made for the popcorn during the movie. She was 150 and had a full unit active. That could have been a disaster. IOB has saved Sugar from MANY lows and it's a safety feature I'm simply unwilling to compromise.

    We also like having the option of using different types of infusion sets (though, we haven't needed to change from the Animas Insets since we began using them with Cozmo in 2007). Medtronic uses proprietary tubing and doesn't allow the flexibility of trying new products.

    The other reason, we prefer Animas over Medtronic is the waterproof factor. Sugar has been swimming, splashing in monsoons, running through sprinklers, playing at splashpads, and tubing behind a boat on a lake...all while wearing her pump.

    Both Animas and Omnipod have contracts with the Dexcom CGM system. The entire T1 community has been patiently waiting for the release of their combined products for about a year. We've been waiting and waiting and waiting....should be soon....or at least we hope so!

  3. Hi Stephanie...first off, thank you for your suppport over my "melt-down" last night. Luckily, I am better ... with sleep, no more lows, and a sunny day I am ready to take on the WORLD!

    Lorraine, from This Is Caleb, would be a good one to talk about the Omnipod with. I believe they are quite happy with it.

    We have loved our Ping. The tubing has NeVER been an issue. Joe started pumping when he was 3 years old. I was concerned that the tubing would get caught on stuff, that the site would get dislodged, and that it would get in the way of Joe's play...NONE of these concerns have materialized.

    The remote on the Ping is fabulous. The LED screen makes it easy to see. I like the basal increments of 0.025u/h (I think medtronic is working on a 0.025u increment on their basal that should be coming out soon). I have to say that the minute increments of basal insulin is why I chose Animas 3 1/2 years ago. Young children are extremely sensitive to insulin... the ability to be able to change basal rates in such small increments can make all the difference between highs and lows. Although Animas does not currently have the sensor married to it...Dexcom and Animas are planning on partnering...this too is said to be in the works. I don't know when it is going to happen. So for now, Joe wears the pump and the sensor in his Tallygear can see what that looks like on the sidebar of my blog. Joe does not find it cumbersome at all.

    Please feel free to email me or leave me a comment if you have further questions. I am more than happy to help in any way possible.

    Have a wonderful Sunday with your family!

  4. I just had a looong comment and lost it.. ARG!

    We have all been faced with this question... I cant find my post.but I will send you the link if I do because it had some helpfull comments.
    Some of the D Mama's did a "Parade of Pumps". Here is Laura's link(Omni-pod). You will find Meri's(Mini Med) and Hallie's(Ping) post there.

    Laura also did a few Pod post in March(ish) of 2009.

    Whatever you choose will be great. We all love our pump for different reason... they work for us. We love the remote to our ping. We were also interested in the Pod, but I was concerned with the remote traveling back and forth to school(Justin can loose things) and in the end... the rep was less than friendly so that was that!

    Good luck!

  5. Found it!!!! There were some helpful comments here :)

  6. Your friend rocks!

    Jack is still on injections, and we are faced with the same pump questions and decision. For us, it's going to come down to a list of pros and cons and gut feelings. We'll go with the one that we think will work best for Jack as an individual.

    At the ADA's Diabetes Expo, which, if I remember correctly, is in March, you'll have an opportunity to speak with the reps and see the pumps again. Perhaps by then, Animas and Omnipod will have integrated the CGM?

  7. This is way long, sorry!!!
    I have never tried another pump, so I can't say too much about the others. Ellie is on the OmniPod. I, like you are doing, started looking at all the options well before insurance or the endo even thought of the discussion. First, I pushed hard to get the pump before the 6 month wait the insurance company was requiring and second, my endo basically said no when I announced I was going to put Ellie on the OmniPod (for the insulin on board argument mentioned earlier, I gave him my research and he did some asking around and is now cool with Omni). You need someone neutral to explain the difference between the OmniPod and the other pumps regarding the insulin on board feature. It's a difference in philosophy and there is actually no "right" answer (this is from my research and readings that I say this). Get the book "Pumping Insulin" by John Walsh. It is considered the pump bible. This will get you started with the terminology and get you ready for the complicated formulas and processes of the pump. Regardless which pump you pick...pumping can come with a huge expectation of ease and control. The only benefit really to pumping is not having to stick your child all day long for insulin AND not having to stick your child all day long for insulin...I said that twice on purpose. I actually experienced a huge let down a few months after the pump because I thought it would make Ellie's life easier and our life easier taking care of her. It is a good thing, machine, product...but it does not remove any aspect of the disease...I wish someone had warned me that I may experience a letdown or even anger that the pump didn't make diabetes better. We do not have problems with the way Omni does insulin on board. We have had only a few lows (30's or 40's). Most were in the beginning and I am now pretty sure it was due to some honeymooning. The most recent 2 lows (4th of mama arrogance and a freak one that was still my doing with a correction, but still didn't make sense) could have happened just as easily with any pump.
    Ellie has been trying new places for her Omni the last couple of weeks and they have all worked out pretty well. Back of her arms, both legs, tummy and even her back (towards the bottom). We are very very happy with the Omni. Get on line and search independent articles about pumps (not company sites). Google John Walsh and get the book. Oh and get "Think Like a Pancreas" by Gary Scheiner that book flat rocks! Email me if you want more explanation or have any questions that I may be able to help with on the Omni (questions about our experience of course! I am by NO MEANS expert on diabetes or the pumps…)

  8. We just went through this about 5 months ago! We ended up doing 2 saline trials and Addison was much more comfortable with the Animas Ping than the Omnipod. If you go to my blog and use the search box, type in "pump" and you will find several posts about our pre-pump decision making process! I learned that all pumps are fabulous and you can find the one that fits best with your child and family by trying them out and talking to the reps. I love our Animas Ping and even though I think the Omnipod is super cool..the Animas just worked better for us! We chose to try Animas instead of Medtronic because it is waterproof and is going to be integrated with Dexcom CGM in the future.
    Ditto on Sara's comment above though..the best thing about the pump besides the IOB (which I love) is not having to do so many freaking injections all day long. My son was great about injections but our life is a lot less stressful without them..

  9. I could basically just ditto Wendy and Reyna's comments...I think they said it all. We are on the Ping and have loved it, but that's the only one we've ever tried, so I don't have anything to compare it to!
    Good luck with the decision. Also, we did injections for one year and (although learning all the new stuff for the pump was kind of stressful) as soon as we started pumping I wished we had done it sooner. It simplifies things SOOOO much, especially with these little kids.

  10. Everyone has made great comments...totally agree with them all :-)
    Bryce has been on the Animas Ping for a year and a half (5 mons after diagnosis) We LOVE it! I had to do without the remote for a day when I dropped and broke it (Animas overnighted me a new one with no problems-GREAT customer service!!) made me realize how AWESOME and necessary the remote feature is when you are bolusing an active kid!! Never had issues with tubing. Being waterproof is huge! Not having to do injections multiple times a day is priceless.
    Is a pump perfect? no. Will your a1cs be perfect with a pump? not necessarily (ours isn't). But being able to let your child eat like any other child is so worth it. (IMO of course)
    Good luck deciding!

  11. We love our Medronics for the ease of use. The boys can bolus themselves, and it couldn't be easier. Lora posted a link. Good luck on making your choice. It is very personal, and different for everyone. But the bottom line is, you can't go wrong with a pump, period! It is a blessing for sure!

  12. I also agree with all the comments above. It is a personal choice that you have to take into consideration with what you want, what your child likes and what your endo thinks will be a good fit. My daughter uses the Animas Ping. We really liked the OmniPod but the pods (at the time) were just too big. I have been very happy with the Ping though. Good Luck deciding!